[OSGeo-Conf] Video Recording FOSS4G

Eli Adam eadam at co.lincoln.or.us
Fri Sep 14 17:08:41 PDT 2018

On Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 3:56 PM, Cameron Shorter
<cameron.shorter at gmail.com> wrote:
> Thanks Michael and Steven for this feedback on videos. I've picked out some
> of this content into the FOSS4G Cookbook [1], and linked back to this email
> thread. Would be good to update as you see fit.

Thanks for adding it to the Cookbook.

> One method I'd be interested to see experimented with is a "scrappy" cheap
> alternative, where attendees are invited to record the sessions they attend
> on their mobile phones, then upload to a central server afterwards. This
> could be used especially for Local or Regional events which don't have a
> budget for professional recording.

This could be interesting.

> [1] https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/FOSS4G_Handbook#Videos
> Cameron
> On 15/9/18 3:59 am, michael terner wrote:
> Steven et al:
> Thanks for relaying the message on the videoing.
> To all:
> Indeed, providing the "LOC perspective on videoing" has been a bit of a
> personal cause as it was an extremely challenging part of Boston. I have
> posted to the Conference Dev on this previously and will continue to do so,
> as I believe it is an important and challenging issue that other LOCs are
> likely to face. Indeed, both Steven and Til have conveyed the core elements
> of the challenge. Here are a few additional points and a rationale for
> having OSGeo directly support the funding of videoing:
> Full disclosure: As a member of the Conference Dev Committee and as Charter
> Member, I fully support the goal of videoing as much of a FOSS4G conference
> as is possible. As a conference chair, the calculus is a bit more difficult.
> Videoing is not easy, nor inexpensive. It is to the Bonn Team's great
> credit, and also to their supplier Kaos Klub's (sic) credit that they made
> it look easy. And in the end, they were affordable.
> The Boston Team was so impressed with Kaos Klub that we tried earnestly to
> bring them to Boston. Ultimately, they were not able to commit to supporting
> us.
> The primary goal of an LOC is to provide the best possible experience for
> those who attend the event. Hosting a FOSS4G is first and foremost for the
> visitors to your city and your paying customers and sponsors.

I'll also add that the LOC is already very busy running a conference.
Also simultaneously running a sophisticated video program just piles
on work.

> Videoing adds great value to OSGeo in being able to keep the presentations
> in perpetuity and to use them in a marketing and educational context.
> Equally, OSGeo has a broader mandate than an LOC to widen the reach of a
> FOSS4G conference to people who are unable to attend.

Exactly correct!

> Yes, Steven is correct, in cities like Boston, there are limited options for
> videoing. At our venue, the venue required we use their in-house video for
> the main, plenary room (3 screens, multiple cameras, etc. etc.). The cost of
> that was in excess of $50,000. The estimated cost to video 11 rooms
> concurrently was also in excess of $50,000 (although we were free to pursue
> other options for those rooms), so the overall budget would have exceeded
> $100,000.
> While we knew the budget, we needed to make a decisions on the videoing
> approach 3 months before the conference. That is, at a time when we had only
> 500+ registrants and knew that we needed 800 registrations to break even. At
> that time, we were unable to make a commitment to spend $50,000 that we did
> not have in hand. And so we chose to do-it-yourself (DIY), which was
> estimated to cost $15,000 - $20,000 including buying the equipment.
> Guido led a team that did incredible work and we successfully captured video
> of 80%+ of the sessions DIY and with volunteers operating the equipment. But
> Guido's team was extremely stressed, almost to the point of breaking during
> the entire conference. And then, after the conference, we had huge piles of
> video to edit and merge (i.e., slides + speaker video) and upload.
> But in the end, we achieved a very healthy surplus. Had we known in advance
> that we would have that surplus, there is no possible way we would have
> chosen DIY. We would have spent the $50,000. (And indeed, we paid for
> processing and uploading the video by using a contractor after the
> conference.)
> From my POV, requiring videoing while providing no direct financial support,
> and as Til points out, at the same time pushing LOCs hard to maintain
> affordability, is neither fair, nor equitable to the LOC. Videoing is in
> OSGeo's direct interests (far more than the LOC's) and if it's very
> important, than OSGeo should be prepared to pay for it.
> The scheme that Steven and I proposed in an earlier draft is a fair approach
> that would have made an enormous difference to Boston. Basically, OSGeo
> loans the LOC the money to pay for videoing (or a large proportion of the
> videoing) and then the first bit of the surplus is used to pay back that
> loan. If there is no surplus, then loan is not repayed, and OSGeo does in
> fact pay for the videoing, to its own great benefit.
> If OSGeo is not willing to pay for the videoing, how is it fair to have the
> LOC (or rather, the paying attendees) pay for it? Indeed, in Dar es Salaam,
> the DLOC made the intentional choice of only videoing the plenary sessions
> and saving money. Money that was used to broaden attendance at the
> conference through discount tickets for local people. Part of that decision
> was informed by looking at the Boston video viewing stats. Indeed, our
> keynotes had many hundreds of views, but a typical session had 20 - 30
> viewings over the past year. That is non-trivial, but "how much" is that
> worth? I believe the DLOC made the right call in erring on bringing more
> people to Dar.
> I recognize and respect that this issue is not resolved. And the best
> possible solution (which Astrid described to Steven and myself) would be
> some kind of "video team" (or other resources) that could be deployed to
> FOSS4G conferences (where ever they may be held) and that could provide the
> videoing services at an affordable cost. I certainly hope that is what
> happens at Bucharest. But if such a solution is not possible, then I believe
> it is fair and appropriate that OSGeo invest in the videoing that it
> believes is important enough to state as a requirement in the RfP. Since it
> does not appear that OSGeo is yet comfortable making that commitment, then I
> would concur with Steven that video should not be made a "hard requirements"
> and should rather be listed as a "strong preference."

All this really covers it!  A great write up.

> I am confident we will find a good long term approach for this challenge.
> But the challenge is real and needs some action from OSGeo.
> Most sincerely, and over & out from the Dar es Salaam airport on my way back
> to Boston...
> MT
>> Am 14.09.2018 um 11:09 schrieb Steven Feldman:
>> <snip>
>> The funding of video recording is going to have to be left unresolved. At
>> the moment all that we are saying is that we want recording and that OSGeo
>> “may” provide a loan. The provision of recording is quite contentious
>> amongst recent chairs:
>> Prior to Bonn there was no large scale video recording to my knowledge. At
>> Nottingham we had Audio recording

Just for reference, 2014 PDX streamed all sessions live and also video
recorded them.  Those videos can be accessed right from the schedule,

2015 Seoul, also has their videos indexed from the schedule.  I don't
remember if they live streamed.

Both 2014 and 2015 are on Vimeo.  https://vimeo.com/foss4g  TIB in
Hanover seems like a safe long term storage place and hopefully they
all get archived there.  It is difficult to gauge which videos will be
popular.  Lots of the 2014 normal sessions have ~80 views but there
are also a lot with 400+

>> Bonn set a very high standard thanks to the team of external specialist
>> volunteers who took on the task
>> Boston did an incredible job using home built systems but it was an
>> enormous strain on the LOC and the volunteers to get this done. An external
>> team would have cost close on $100k I believe (MT?) and that would have
>> added $80+ to the ticket price or eliminated most of the surplus returned to
>> OSGeo
>> Dar only recorded the keynotes and some sessions in the main hall, I
>> believe that this was due to a combination of cost and organisation (MI?)
>> People outside of the LOC are always keen that the proceedings are
>> recorded and made available to a wider audience, I understand why. The LOC
>> may well be concerned at the cost of hiring in a professional team to record
>> up to 9 streams of content or the administrative burden of trying to record
>> using an in-house team of volunteers.

I'm generally not in favor of adding more requirements on the LOCs.
Especially ones that further stress an uncertain budget.

>> I’d prefer to leave recording as a strongly desired but not mandatory
>> requirement (also seek clarity on whether all sessions will  be recorded)

Sounds reasonable.

Best regards, Eli

>> and remove the section on an OSGeo loan as that will make matters more
>> complex. Others will have a different view. We need to make a decision and
>> get the RfP out. I can edit the video sections of the RfP once there is a
>> decision.
>> ______
>> Steven
> --
> Cameron Shorter
> Technology Demystifier
> Open Technologies and Geospatial Consultant
> M +61 (0) 419 142 254
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